I had a great time for the last three weeks ignoring my laptop, my smart phone, and the Internet while staying in our summer place in Indiana and visiting some of our kids and grand kids just across the border in Illinois. Quite relaxing. Just got back yesterday afternoon and am catching up on the tools I recently ignored.
Imagine my surprise reading the blog from Paul Orwig about the 2012 Joint Leadership Summit Summary. Maybe it's just me? It sure seems that he was putting spin on the meeting. No details were forthcoming. Not even the number of attendees at the meeting. No information on what recommendations might have been agreed to or even if there was consensus at the meeting on any recommendations.
In several other areas of Joomla! leadership, we continue to see schedules and promises but nothing ever seems to materialize. Though there has been some action to note - there seems to have been a very strong effort to reduce the expenses paid to OSM's trademark attorneys (Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, L.L.P.) over the last several years as I noted in the blog OSM - A Poor Performing Board of Directors. In 2009, the legal fees were $149,252.57. Based on the 2010 OSM 990 filing on December 14, 2011, legal fees were $84,411. For 2011, legal fees through October, 2011 were $12,194.99 (unfortunately, current financial information hasn't been made available in some time). A very significant decline. Let's see what is going on now with Trademark activity:
Here we go again. Empty promises over and over seem to be the rule in the Joomla! leadership house.
The latest, of course, is the one called the proposed Joomla! leadership changes. Why am I being sarcastic? Well, let's examine what is now going on. First, Paul Orwig while voting for additional discussion at the upcoming J and Beyond in Germany in May, 2012 stated:
I suggest that we take the next three months leading up to JAB to form one or more working groups that will study various aspects of the proposed leadership structure changes in more depth. That way we can have a more detailed set of recommendations to review and discuss at JAB, with the goal of making a decision there about the best approach to implement.
Some leaders perceive they can, by force of will, ensure the intended consequences of their actions – even in the face of mounting evidence that the outside forces (e.g. competitors, regulators, economic conditions, customers, or community) are not reacting to their expectations “correctly.” Greek tragedians referred to this failing as “hubris” – the overwhelming pride that blinds the tragic hero to the consequences of his/her actions. The audience can clearly foresee the inevitable fall from a great height, but the tragic hero is blind to all but his own intentions.
If you have not yet had the opportunity, I suggest you read Paul Orwig's latest communication in the Joomla Leadership Google Group.
In the March, 2012 Joomla Community Magazine interview with Paul Orwig, former Treasurer of OSM and now President of OSM, said the following:
Emphasis shown is mine. Note that this is the same person who has stonewalled the Joomla! community for the last two years by failing to consistently provide "transparent" financial reports for community review as promised by the board, recommitted to on their J!People page, and required in their own bylaws.
Let's see, where are we? Oh, yes, it's the end of the first week of January 2012.
So according to some speculators, the Mayan calendar foretells an apocalyptic event. It even gives us a potential date for the theoretical downfall: Dec. 21, 2012. Around 11 months and two weeks away. It is now my fervent belief that if OSM actually holds to their previous promises to publish the financial reports on time as well as the board minutes, it is likely to be on December 20, 2012 and we will only have one day to enjoy it!
End of the first week in January, 2012. Financial reports for the end of November, 2011 and the end of December, 2011 have not been published. Nor has there been any communication concerning the holdup. So, Paul Orwig's dismal record in posting OSM's financial reports for the Joomla! Community to review is at 16.6% for the year (2 out of twelve months).
That's gotta be it!
What other explanation would there be for failure to post the OSM financials for November - now seven days (one week) after the end of November and soon to start the second week of December? Update: Now three weeks after the end of November and still no OSM financial reports for November available. In addition, the Attorney General of New York posted OSM's New York tax reports but OSM has failed to post their IRS 1120 tax return. Transparency - bah, humbug seems to be OSM's mantra this past year and a half.
I mean, after all, Paul Orwig's record for posting the financial reports is already dismal. Failure to post the November financials in a timely manner (within one week is certainly timely from my point of view) will keep him at only a 20% record of posting the financials at all for the entire year. Posting November and December would only get him to 33% for the year.
... it might as well be!
Yesterday, Paul Orwig posted to the Google Joomla Leadership Group that the OSM board had suggested that he extend his solicitation to the leadership seeking their opinion on whether they go forward with the proposed structural changes to the Joomla! Project. The original post was made October 30 and there had only been one reply and that was from Brad Baker who didn't necessarily see the proposed changes as a solution to the issues raised but said "Still, I am happy to support the majority". Which is, of course, one of the problems I see with the Joomla Leadership as a whole. (See Groupthink blog.)
Unfortunately, Paul Orwig is not only a member of OSM, he is also its Treasurer - one of the now four officer positions of the board. He is also a member of the Community Leadership Team (CLT). That definitely puts him up there as one of the leaders within Joomla.
This is the mission statement developed in Germany in 2008 by OSM and the core team and still published on the OSM website:
Our mission is to provide a flexible platform for digital publishing and collaboration.
Yet, this is the mission statement described by Paul Orwig in his November 9th blog about OSM's top 2012 goal ideas:
OSM's mission is to provide open, responsible, and effective leadership in support of the Joomla! project’s legal, trademark, events, financial, and external communications needs.
That's quite a switch in mission statements! And apparantly without input from Joomla Leadership (it wasn't mentioned in the summaries of the San Jose summit) and there wasn't any input solicited from the Joomla! community. Looks like OSM is heading down its own singular pathway yet once again. Might help the current OSM board members to review the mission, vision, and value statements that they are responsible for alongside the rest of the Joomla! leadership.